Leon's Thai Tuk Shop 'pops down' and disappears from Shaftesbury Avenue

By Georgia Bronte contact

- Last updated on GMT

Leon's Thai Tuk Shop 'pops down' on Shaftesbury Avenue

Related tags: Leon, Fast food, Thai cuisine

Leon has closed its experimental Thai fast food restaurant Tuk Shop on London’s Shaftesbury Avenue after just two months of trading.

Leon’s Twitter page says that Tuk Shop, a collaboration with Bangkok-based food group Aylmer Aaharn, of which chef David Thompson, an expert in Thai cuisine, is a partner, has “popped down”.

It adds that it will “pop up again later in the year with a brand new menu” in a central London location.

The site is being returned to its original guise, as a standard Leon restaurant.

Company CEO John Vincent told Restaurant​ magazine in June that Tuk Shop, which served Thai curries, noodles, rice dishes and salads using Leon’s fast food model, was not a side project and would trade indefinitely if it was well received.

“We don’t want to get ahead of ourselves because this one might take ages to get right, but if and when we get it right, I would like to do more," Vincent said.

"It’s something we really think could have legs."

Like its bigger sibling, Tuk Shop’s menu was pictorial and presented on boards hanging over the counter, which have now been removed. Tuk Shop’s ‘Thai Fast Food’ sign has been replaced with Leon’s ‘Naturally Fast Food’ slogan, and its sign has been replaced with Leon’s signature red logo.

It followed a similar operational model to Leon, with as much food as possible prepared offsite.

Leon is currently pushing its international expansion drive, and will make its US debut at a site in Washington DC this summer, marking the fourth international city the 54-strong restaurant chain has launched in, following Oslo; Amsterdam; and Utrecht.

It will also open its first Irish restaurant later this year, in Dublin, as part of a franchise deal with Cibus Concepts.

Leon has been contacted for further comment.

Related topics: Openings

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